Thought I’d share a shopping experience I had yesterday. I was downtown in the pre-Noon window, which on Sunday means that there’s not a lot open yet. Checked out Case Study coffee which was great (because Portland for sure needs more coffee shops….) and walked by the Indochino “traveling tailor” pop-up. I knew it was in town and had thought about checking it out, but I don’t have a lot of free time these days and it wasn’t a real priority, but there it was. So I went in.
Really well laid out, w/ free coffee (from Case Study next door! I could have saved my $3) and a nice, easy to browse set up of their fabrics and options. There were two sales associates in the space, and each one was engaged with a customer. Other than that, I was the only one there. I probably walked around looking at the fabrics and offerings for a 5 minutes or more before either of them addressed me. When they did, it was a nod and smile. That’s it. Not one word about if I had questions about their program (all MTO), that they’d be with me in a minute, etc. Nothing.
I’d guess I’m firmly in the target demo, and was well dressed, etc. When I saw the prices, I was suddenly thinking, “Hmm. Well, in 30 minutes or so, I could be buying a nice MTO SC and that would be great.” But after being more or less ignored, and not really wanting to push for service, I just left. I couldn’t help but think how much more excited I’d be to spend nearly twice as much on an Epaulet jacket due to the nature of the business and the level of service they provide.
The interesting thing is, I knew exactly who they were and how the model worked. The biggest barrier to entry for me was handling the fabrics and being able to interact with someone. So once I was in the door, I was impressed with the fabrics—at least certainly for the prices. A MTO sport coat for $299 (cottons, slightly more for wool) is a pretty nice deal, and since I’m not a big suit and SC guy, they aren’t items I really pick up multiples of.
I left knowing I’ll probably never buy from them, and affirmed in my desire to support smaller shops (locally when possible), especially ones who really show care for their customer. There are certainly plenty of them in Portland.
Random side note: Nordstrom downtown carries Rag & Bone suiting, and it looks great.